Colored Rock Map of Texas at I-20 in Pecos, Click for Travel Guide

Pecos Enterprise

Site Map
Pecos Gab

Pecos Country History
Archive 62
Archive 74
Archive 87
1987 Tornado Photos
Rodeo Photos 88
Archive 95
Archive 96
Archive 97
News Photos 1997
Rodeo Photos 97
Archive 98
News Photos 1998
Rodeo Photos 98
Parade Photos 98
Archive 99
Photos 99
Archive 2000
Photos 2000
Photos 2001
Photos 2002

Archive 2002

Area Newspapers
Economic Development


Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Thursday, March 21, 2002

Filings on last day fill up most local election races

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., March 21, 2002 -- Last minute filers trickled into city hall, the  Pecos-Barstow-Toyah school administration office and  the Reeves County Hospital office on Wednesday, in order to file for  a position in the May city, school and hospital elections.

Incumbent Michele Galindo and Connie Herrera both joined the race for a position on the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD board on the final day to file for the May 4 election.

Galindo is currently serving on the board after winning an unexpired term last year. Her seat, along with the one held by Billie Sadler is up for election this year. Sadler already had filed for a new two-year term, while Paul Deishler, who was defeated last year in his bid for a full-term on the school board, also has filed to run.

Deishler was appointed to an unexpired term on the P-B-T ISD board in 2000, but opted to run for a full term last year instead of the one-year unexpired term. Galindo won the unexpired seat in last May's election.

In the Reeves County Hospital District Board of Directors race, three people filed for a seat on Wednesday that until then had no candidates entered in the race.

The three filed to run for the Precinct 3 position on the hospital board. Jim Breese, of Pecos and Bill Wendt and Janelle Ward, both of Balmorhea, filed for the two-year term on the board currently held by Jesse Preito.

The at-large seat held by Leo Hung, and the Precinct 1 seat held by Chel Florez are also up for election in May, and Hung and Florez have both filed for new terms and will be unopposed for re-election. However, Prieto was unable to file to retain his Precinct 3 seat, since he now lives in Precinct 2, according to RCH Human Resources Director Nadine Smith.

In the Town of Pecos City Council race, a fifth candidate entered the race for the two available seats on the final day of filing. Israel Campos will join incumbents Ricky Herrera and Danny Rodriguez and challengers Michael Benavides and Angelica Valenzuela on the May 4 election.

City voters will also be deciding the race for mayor, which will be a rematch of the election of two years ago. Mayor Ray Ortega is seeking a second term in office and will be challenged by former city mayor Dot Stafford, who he defeated in the 2000 city election.

Down in Balmorhea, elections are also heating up. Current Mayor Ruben Fuentez will be challenged by Elizabeth Saenz, who is also the Balmorhea ISD Superintendent. Fuentez was appointed mayor last year, following the death in May of mayor Ismael Vasquez Rodriguez.

Councilmen Eddy Roman and Rosendo Galindo have both filed to retain their seats on the council. The two will be opposed by Teresa "Terry" Barragan and Yolanda M. Hernandez.

In Balmorhea, there will be a contested school board race this year. The Balmorhea ISD has three open seats, and incumbents Jimmy Barragan, Jesus Matta and Javier Lozano have filed for re-election, along with challengers Regina Lozano and Dora Machuca.

The only races that will not be contested are the city elections for Toyah and Barstow.

In Toyah, current Toyah Mayor Ann Marsh has filed for re-election to her seat. There are also two council seats open for the May election. Sharon Sanchez has filed for re-election and will be joined by newcomer, Shaina R. Enmon.

In Barstow, Mayor Benny Hernandez and two incumbents have filed to retain their positions. Council members Robert Ortega and Carol Gonzales will also run in the May 4 election. Ortega filed for a full-term while Gonzales filed for the seat she was appointed to last year.

Under state law, both Toyah and Barstow can cancel their city elections in order to save money. Although two of the three seats for the RCH board are uncontested, the hospital district will have to hold elections for all three positions on May 4 due to the Precinct 3 race. All county voters are eligible to cast ballots in the at-large hospital board election.

New video store planning April opening

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., March 21, 2002 -- Local movie buffs will soon have a new place to catch the latest  new releases with a new video rental store opening in the 1000 block  of South Cedar Street.

General Construction Manager George Longoria said that the new store, Movie Gallery, should be opening in three weeks.

The new store, which is located in the old Hill's Thriftway and E-Z Pawn Shop building, is one of about 1,000 stores in various states including Texas, New Mexico and Colorado.

When asked why the company chose Pecos to establish a new store, Longoria said because of the good location and the size of the town.

"(The owners) go around looking for locations," he said, while declining to give their names.

According to Longoria, the owners usually open a store in a town that has at least 4,000 to 5,000 people in it.

"They don't go into big cities," he said. "They just do the little towns."

Movie Gallery will carry many new releases as well as numerous video games at reasonable prices.

This is the second video store that has come in to town, challenging the only other video store, Dan's Music and Video.

Several other Pecos businesses have offered video rentals over the years, but the last large video store to open in town was Showtime, which was operated in Pecos during the early and mid-1990 on South Eddy Street. It closed three years ago.

The construction crew of four started moving in shelving units and other items needed into the future Movie Gallery store on Monday and they hope to be finished by next Wednesday, according to Longoria.

Those interested in working at the new store may attend a job fair from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., next Thursday and Friday at the store.

City, county jobless rates show slight drop

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., March 21, 2002 -- Unemployment in Reeves County and the Town of Pecos City was  down by one-tenth of a percent last month, and is also down slightly from  the same period last year, according to figures released today by the  Texas Workforce Commission.

Reeves County's unemployment fell from 7.6 to 7.5 percent, while the jobless rate in Pecos was down from 8.7 to 8.6 percent, as both the county and city saw their workforce and their total number of jobs drop from January.

The TWC said there were 6,318 people in the county's labor force last month, down from 6,386 in January, while the total number of jobs dropped from 5,903 to 5,847 during the same period. That also lowered the number of people unemployed in the county from 483 in January to 471 last month, according to the TWC.

A year ago, Reeves County's jobless rate was at 7.9 percent, with 504 people out of work in February of 2001 out of 6,398 people in the in the county's workforce. Pecos has seen its workforce fall by 66 in the past year, to 4,933, while the number of unemployed dipped from 451 to 422. In January, the city had 4,986 people in its labor force and 432 people unemployed.

Across the area, unemployment for February was unchanged, at 5.0 percent, while the statewide jobless numbers dipped from 6.0 to 5.8 percent, the TWC reported. Ector County (Odessa) saw it's unemployment fall from 6.2 to 6.1 percent, but Midland County's jobless rate rose from 3.7 to 4.0 percent.

Pecos County and Ward County reported unemployment drops of two-tenths of a percent last month, as both the labor forces and the total number of unemployed in those counties also declined as it did in Reeves County. Andrews and Howard counties reported increases in their labor force and the total number of jobs, but Howard (Big Spring) reported a .4 drop in its jobless rate, while Andrews County saw unemployment rise one-tenth of a percent.

Across Texas, the total number of jobs between January and February were virtually unchanged, while the state's labor force declined. The TWC said there were 124 more jobs in Texas last month, while the workforce dropped by more than 32,000 people, leading to the overall decline in the unemployment rate.

Local cowboy's Fort Worth ride sets new record

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., March 21, 2002 -- A young Pecos cowboy set a new record for bull riding recently  in competition in Fort Worth, earning him the Jr. Championship  Challenge Bull Riding Title at the Tuff Hedeman Jr. Championship Challenge.

Guthrie Long was entered in the event at Fort Worth's Will Rodgers Coliseum for the third consecutive year, and on March 10, Long scored 93 points on ride, the highest score ever given to a junior bull rider.

The 14-year-old Long is the son of Curtis and Jessie Long of Pecos, and the grandson of Gwyn and Janis Long of Spur.

The Jr. Championship Challenge is held in conjunction with the Tuff Hedeman Championship Challenge every year, a Professional Bull Riders Bud Light Cup Event. To qualify, the junior bull rider must win a year-end title from one of only six Rodeo Associations. Those six young Bull Riders who earn titles are then personally invited to meet with Tuff Hedeman himself.

Long competed in the 2001 Texas Youth Bull Riders (TYBR) West Region Association throughout the year, winning the title of Sr. Steer Riding Champion. He then competed in the TYBR State Finals meet in Saginaw, held last August, competing against winners form the TYBR North Region Association. There, he won the event becoming the State Champion Senior Steer Rider.

This qualified him for the Tuff Hedeman Jr. Championship Challenge and in October 2001, Guthrie was invited back to compete in the Challenge by Hedeman

After finishing fifth in March 2000 and third in March 2001 at Fort Worth, this was Long's last chance at the title.

"He made a hell of a ride," said his father Curtis Long. "The steer made two big jumps out of the chute and started spinning to the right. The more that steer spun, the faster and faster he got."

"The crowd was behind Guthrie all the way, cheering and standing as they watched him make the ride. It was a great feeling. Guthrie threw his hat into the air and was as excited as I had ever seen him," said Long. "He knew he did what he had to do."

Along with the title came many prizes. He earned a $1,000 check; Bob Berg Buckle; Spurs made by Cody Lambert; Felt Hat; PBR Jacket and a Mighty Bucky Bucking Barrell.

This past Sunday, Long was honored with a plaque given to him just before the start of a Bull Riding Event in Odessa. Royce Baggett, West Region Director of the Texas Youth Bull Riders Association, presented Guthrie with the plaque and congratulated him on the way he represented the association and on his championship.

Long has been riding rough stock since the age of five, beginning with calves. He moved up to steers and now rides peewee bulls, Jr. bulls, and novice bulls. He has competed many times and has several awards and titles to his credit including over 20 buckles and two championship saddles.

Last year alone, he won seven titles including the 2001 Casa Bull Bash Novice Bull Rider Champion; 2001 Monahans Stage Coach Festival Sr. Steer Rider Champion; 2001 Professional Youth Rodeo Association Reserve Sr. Steer Rider Champion; 2001 Youth Rough Stock Riders Association Sr. Steer Rider Champion and Jr. Bull Rider Champion along with his 2001 TYBR titles.

He is leading the TYBR Association in points this year in Jr. Bulls.

Long will be traveling to Tulsa, Okla., on March 29 and 30, where he will compete in the Third Annual Clem McSpadden Championship Youth Rodeo against over 60 other bull riders.

Long also travels to various rodeos with two of his toughest competitors, Coy Creager of Mentone and Casey Bowman of Lamesa. These two young men are also two of Long's closest friends and supporters. Many times this three-some have taken the top three spots at rodeo's placing, first, second and third.

Hearing scheduled on possible change in pet vaccinations

PECOS, Thurs., March 21, 2002 -- The Texas Department of Health will hold a meeting in Midland on Wednesday, April 17 at Midland College to hear public comments before deciding on a possible change in the state law on annual rabies vaccinations for dogs and cats.

The meeting in Midland is one of nine scheduled around the state, beginning next week and running through the first week of June. The meeting will be at 7 p.m. at the Davidson Family Health Sciences Building, 3600 N. Garfield St. in Midland.

The state has mandated annual rabies vaccines for dogs and cats since 1980. The vaccine for dogs is effective for three years, while cats can be given a vaccine effective for from one to three years. The change would allow for non-annual vaccinations if the three-year vaccine is used.


PECOS, Thurs., March 21, 2002 -- High Wednesday 63. Low this morning 42. Forecast for  tonight: Mostly cloudy and breezy with lows in the lower 30s. Northeast winds  15 to 25 mph: Diminishing to 10 to 15 mph after midnight. Friday:  Partly cloudy and cooler. Highs in the lower 60s. South winds 5 to 15 mph.  Friday night: Mostly clear. Lows 35 to 40. Saturday: Mostly sunny, breezy,  and warmer. Highs in the upper 70s. Sunday: Partly cloudy and  breezy. Lows near 40. Highs near 80.


Jose Fuentes and Vada Gray

Search Entire Site:

Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.

324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321

Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium.

Copyright 2002 by Pecos Enterprise